Troy to Host Overnight Stop of 2018 Great Race
Mayor Patrick Madden announced the City of Troy will host an overnight stop of the 2018 Great Race, the world’s premiere vintage car rally, on Sunday, June 24. Hemmings Motor News’ the Great Race will bring 120 of the world’s finest antique automobiles to the Collar City for the event – presented locally by Brown’s Brewing Company – with the first car rolling down River Street in downtown Troy starting at approximately 5:00 pm, with additional events and entertainment planned throughout Saturday.
Mayor Patrick Madden said, “With the addition of the Great Race to this year’s exciting entertainment lineup, the 2018 Troy summer event season is shaping up to be the best one yet! We invite families and visitors from across the Capital Region to join us this June for a unique event that celebrates our nation’s rich automotive heritage in Troy’s historic downtown.”
Event Director Jeff Stumb said, “When the Great Race pulls into a city it becomes an instant festival. Last year, we had four overnight stops with more than 10,000 spectators on our way to having 250,000 people see the Great Race during the event. We are thrilled to include Troy in this year’s event and look forward to being part of Troy’s unique summer season.”
Garry Brown, owner of presenting sponsor Brown’s Brewing Company said, “Brown’s Brewing Company is delighted to partner with the City of Troy to present this unique event in downtown Troy. The resurgence of this historic and beautiful city has been awesome to witness, and Kelly and I appreciate being part of it. Beginning with the 175 year old warehouse that we resurrected to become our brewery and taproom here in Troy, we are always inspired by the hard work involved to give new life to the relics of the past. It is an honor to be a presenting sponsor for this one-of-a-kind experience for the people of Troy.”
The 2018 Great Race stop in Troy will also coincide with the Capital Region Cars and Caffeine event, the area’s largest classic car meet-up, which is held across several blocks of River Street in Troy’s North Central neighborhood. Additional entertainment, special events and music performances are scheduled for Great Race event day. Event organizers and city officials will be announcing further details, including entertainment schedule, event lineup and activities, during a press conference on Sunday, April 29, at Troy-based automotive customization & restoration shop 1945 Speed and Custom.
Jeremy Baye, owner of 1945 Speed and Custom said, “As a restoration and hot rod shop owner in the City of Troy, I’m thrilled and honored to support this exciting and unique community event. Our Cars and Caffeine meet ups – held on the last Sunday of every month from April through October – attracts over 500 cars and thousands of people from across New York and New England, transforming River Street into a multi-block celebration for car-enthusiasts of all ages. I look forward to experiencing what The Great Race will bring to one of the most antique- and custom car-friendly cities in the country.”
Charles Darmanjian, Cars and Caffeine event organizer said, "The combined energy, passion and history of Troy's automotive community are a perfect match for the excitement the Great Race will bring to the Collar City this summer. Coinciding with our Capital Region Cars and Caffeine event, we are expecting a significant turnout, including hundreds of classic and modern cars from local clubs, Great Race event participants and the general public. I am incredibly excited to build on the growth of our successful automotive events and am confident that Great Race organizers will be glad they chose Troy as an overnight stop."
Great Race participants will cover more than 2,300 miles in 9 days. The race starts at the Pierce Arrow Museum in downtown Buffalo, N.Y., on June 23. The race will finish July 1 in Halifax, Nova Scotia, on the banks of Halifax Harbour as part of the city’s Canada Day celebration. Teams and cars from Japan, England, Germany, Canada and every corner of the United States will be participating in their vintage automobiles dating back as far as 1913.
Over the decades, the Great Race has stopped in hundreds of cities big and small, from tiny Austin, NV, to New York City. This year, race competitors will travel through four states – New York, Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine – and two Canadian provinces – New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. The Great Race, which began 35 years ago, is not a speed race, but a time/speed/distance rally. The vehicles, each with a driver and navigator, are given precise instructions each day that detail every move down to the second. They are scored at secret check points along the way and are penalized one second for each second either early or late. As in golf, the lowest score wins.
Each stop on The Great Race route – including Troy, New York – is free to the public. Spectators of all ages will be able to visit with race participants and look at the cars for several hours.
Cars built in 1972 and earlier are eligible, with most entries having been manufactured before World War II. A 1913 Bugatti, a 1916 Hudson Pikes Peak Hillclimber, a 1916 Chevrolet Phaeton, a 1917 Peerless Racer and a chain-driven 1918 American LaFrance Speedster are the oldest cars scheduled to be in the 2018 Great Race. The winners will again receive $50,000 of the $150,000 total purse.
The event was started in 1983 by Tom McRae and takes its name from the 1965 movie, The Great Race, which starred Tony Curtis, Jack Lemmon, Natalie Wood and Peter Falk. The movie is a comedy based on the real life 1908 automobile race from New York to Paris. The Great Race gained a huge following from late night showings on ESPN when the network was just starting out in the early 1980s. The first entrant, Curtis Graf of Irving, Texas, is still a participant today.
The Troy stop of the 2018 Great Race is made possible by the City of Troy presented by Brown’s Brewing Company, in partnership with Troy Local Development Corporation, de Facto Global, John Corey, 1945 Speed and Custom, and Pinhole Press. For more information on being a sponsor for Troy's Great Race event celebration, please contact Cheryl Kennedy at [email protected] or (518) 279-7412.
For more information on The Great Race, go to www.greatrace.com or contact Jeff Stumb at [email protected] or (423) 648-8542.